14. Well, What Do You Know…Wishes Do Come True
We packed up our belongings, checked out at the front desk, and loaded up the car.
The drive back to the Cullen house was traveling quicker than I'd hoped for. I was silently praying Edward and Bella wouldn't be there when we returned. Getting past Emmett was going to be torture in itself, and I cringed when I pictured the look of everyone's faces when we walked through the front door. Awkwardness was only one hour away.
"Stop it," Renesmee said, narrowing her eyes at me from across the car.
"Stop what?" I glanced at her quickly, then back to the road, pretending I didn't have a clue as to what she was talking about.
"Stop what you're thinking." She placed a hand on my arm.
"What am I thinking?" I regretted asking, knowing she was going to tell me, and would probably be right.
"You're thinking about my dad again, aren't you?"
I didn't answer, because saying 'yes, yes I was' just sounded too weird.
"Jacob…" She squeezed my arm tight to get my attention, using more force than a normal human could stand, but I could only focus on the road ahead of us, thinking more about our first morning together.
"What did you mean when you said you'd talked to your dad? That you were sure he didn't want to kill me. Was that a one hundred percent guarantee? Something he told you? Or something you…assumed?"
She didn't answer at first and I grew nervous she truthfully couldn't guarantee me my life when we got back.
"Well…" she was apprehensive to start, then stared out the front window when she began speaking. "I asked if he was going to be able to cope with everything. I mean, within a few days we'd gone from constant supervision to engaged to married."
"What'd he say?" I looked at her, curious.
She continued to stare ahead. "He told me the suddenness was difficult, but he knew how important it was for your dad and the wolves to be there for our wedding. But more so, how difficult it was for you to have to wait all this time…" she stopped, looked out the side of her eyes at me, then forward.
Difficult? Yes. Worth it? Absolutely.
"Did you talk to him about the honeymoon?" I asked nervously, unable to look her way. I didn't want to see the reaction to my question. If she cringed, I would lose my breakfast.
"Yes," she answered softly, not saying anymore, and I found myself frustrated with her one worded, short answer. It didn't sound like the conversation had a positive outcome.
"And?" I pushed for more, still curious what I was in for when we walked into the old homestead.
"He told me about him and my mom." She shuttered slightly, then looked out the side window.
"Like in detail?" My face grew a 'grossed out' expression that Edward would go there. Great, now I was thinking about them. I shook my head, trying to shove the vision from my mind, swallowing back the bile that burned up my throat. Not because of Edward and Bella, but because those were Renesmee's parents. And one should never think of their in-laws in bed at any cost—not counting the many times I'd thought of Bella in such a way when I'd once been in love with her.
But it was me in those old fantasies, not Ren's father.
"No!" She quickly turned to me, sharing the same look of disgust. "He told me what it would be like without having to go into that." Her eyes rolled. "And that even though our experience would be different, the result would still be the same."
"Oh. Gotcha." I smiled at the memory of the last few nights, thankful I hadn't been in Edward's shoes of having to worry about killing my wife in the process.
"He knew what was going to happen, of course," she continued, "and told me he would do his best to get through it. And to give him time. That even though I was his daughter, it was a normal thing we were entering into."
I found myself wanting to end this conversation. Because even though I tried not to, my head was now full of images of Bella when she'd returned home from their honeymoon; pregnant, sick, bruised…and dying. In fact, the flashes were making me feel queasy all over again. And then I thought about Renesmee's birth…
"He understands, Jacob," she went on, taking advantage of my silence. "I don't understand why you think he'd want to kill you?"
I grunted as an answer then sighed. "I'm just nervous," my voice shook. "Edward's my friend. I feel like I violated a part of my friendship with him by doing something with someone he cares deeply about."
I gave her a peeved look. What was so funny?
"I'd hardy call what happened, a violation." She smiled as she grabbed my hand and intertwined our fingers. Her grip was tight and reassuring.
"Sure, sure," I replied, knowing it didn't matter how anyone else saw it. That was how I felt. Like when you find out a guy's been messing around with your girl and you end up fighting it out for testosterone's sake. Would I have a fight when I got home?
I wasn't sure how long I would be able to hold out on phasing if Edward was waiting for me. Renesmee would just have to understand if fists and claws came to blows.
"Everything will be fine. You'll see." She ran a hand up and down my arm when I we finally turned off the highway onto the road that was that much too close to home. And I couldn't help but let my thoughts run away with me when I knew how close I was to his mind as well.
Edward. I'm sorry already. I don't want to think about anything from the last two nights. But since I know that's going to be impossible…I'm going to ask that you don't hurt me, or make this any more awkward than it already is. As my friend, I'm asking, please. Um…okay then. I'd said my final words as I slowly pulled up the long drive to who-knew-what.
My heart nearly stopped when I parked in front of the house, the blood draining from my body to form a cold pool in my feet when I spied Edward standing on the front porch, his arms crossed and a stern look in his face—waiting for me, of course.
So much for awkward…
I thought about holding Nessie in front of me until we made it into the house, he'd never hit a girl, that wasn't non-vampire, or his own child. But that plan quickly fizzled when she jumped out of the car and ran up to great him, leaving me to get our bags, my arms about to be filled and completely defenseless.
"Hi, dad." She kissed him on the cheek.
He leaned into her kiss, not saying anything while he stared me down in the process.
I focused my eyes to the tight, white knuckle grip I had on the steering wheel, having not let go of it yet. Bella had done some damage with one once to Charlie's police cruiser. It would make for the closest weapon I could find if needed.
After Renesmee went inside, sitting here by myself, I wondered if she had any clue as to who she'd left me alone with. His eyes had 'pissed off murder' flowing through them if I had to guess, and I pictured my blood spilling out in a thick puddle around my lifeless body before I could even make it to the steps. If I was quick, I could yell for Bella before he snapped my neck.
My throat tightened. I wrapped a hand around it, imagining the feeling of it being broken, finding it hard to breathe. I should really stop watching CSI shows.
I made no eye contact with Edward when I finally got out, shut the car door, and made my way around to the popped trunk. I raised the lid and sighed heavily behind it so he couldn't see me at least. Then I wondered how long I was going to stand here like a stupid coward before I'd have to drag myself up to greet him.
I didn't want to look into his eyes. I didn't want to see that same intimidating glare he'd always enjoyed giving me for the last four years.
Oh well…I thought as I grabbed the bags from the car and slammed the trunk closed…here goes nothing.
"Hey, Edward." I found the strength to look at him, trying to sound calm as I slowly placed one foot in front of the other until I stopped to rest one shoe on the first step. Yep, there was that glare; right where I'd left it.
He didn't say anything, his arms still crossed, looking as un-cheerful as ever.
I could feel the inside of my palms start to sweat in the silence.
"Look, Edward, I, uh, don't know what to do from here. I'll do my best to try not to think about things, but, I don't want to feel like this and see that look on your face that says, 'I'll give you a head start running'. You know how much I love her, and how much I can't help but want to be close to her." And I realized talking about her like that made me subconsciously think about things again.
Edward's face tightened.
Should I start running now? I asked as I set the bags down on the ground at my feet.
He didn't say anything again; he only continued to stare at me.
For goodness sakes, Edward, if you're going to kill me, just do it already! I sighed heavily, and waited.
"Are you done?" He finally spoke after one of the longest minutes of my life with a cold voice.
My eyes shifted around, wondering if there was any more I could say, should say before it was lights out. "Yeah, I'm done…"
Edward took one step down from the porch and I took one step back.
He paused and pursed his lips.
"Do you know what bothers me, Jacob…" He took another step down and I matched him with another step back, causing his nostrils to flare, "…is that you're being too hard on yourself." He took another step, and I remained still, not sure I'd heard him correctly.
"And…" his voice remained cold when he took another step. I backed up this time, not sure I was comfortable with the way he said 'and'.
"…that you think I'd want to kill you after you spent a few evenings with your wife." He swallowed whatever substance had formed in his mouth. Venom, vomit, blood…I didn't know.
"But it's your daughter…" I cursed myself for having such a hard time with this. I knew it was wrong to feel so guilty, but I couldn't help it. He would always know, always know, always know what we did in private.
"True. But do you honestly think anything that happened, or will happen, would come as a surprise to me, that I'd seriously consider bodily harm to you? Leaving you lying with a broken neck in a puddle of your own blood?" He looked angry.
I had a way of doing that to him.
"No, I guess not." I shrugged, feeling more like an idiot by the minute. "But, how do I not think about it?" I asked as I pictured myself with her. Damn it!
"Like you are now." He clinched his teeth.
"Yes." I swallowed, looking at the ground, utterly embarrassed.
"Jacob. I don't want you to worry about thinking about it, or not thinking about it. I just want you to have a normal, happy marriage. I'll handle things on my end, alright?" His voice softened a bit.
"And how are you going to do that?" I raised an eyebrow. Could he really handle it?
"Just because I can read minds, doesn't mean I always do." He seemed to be confessing to something I didn't know.
"What do you mean?"
"I can tune people out. They're still there, but the frequency goes fuzzy when I'm not focused on them. And now that you're married, my gift to you as my friend, and the husband of my daughter, is to tune you both out."
"Really?" I wondered if he was joking.
"It's not a joke," he said, and I realized his gift hadn't kicked in yet.
"Thanks, Edward, that'll be a huge help. So, when does the fuzziness start?" I felt weird asking, as if I had an ulterior motive to get busy right away. Which I didn't, or would admit to, annnnd I'd just thought about how I probably sounded.
"It starts as soon as we walk through that door." He pointed a thumb at the entrance behind him. "If you can hold out that long…"
Ha-ha. We should probably hurry.
"And you won't hear anything after that? It's that easy?" I could have used this gift four years ago if he'd been willing to offer it to me then.
"If you need me all you have to do is shout—and I mean shout—and I'll hear you." He took two more steps down, grabbed our bags then turned to head back up.
What if I shout and it's not your name? My eyes widened, instantly petrified at how that must have sounded. It wasn't what I'd meant.
Edward set the bags down and turned back to me with fire in his eyes, tensing his lips, taking a few stiff steps in my direction. I backed up again. Okay, now I was dead!
"I'll pay attention when it's my name, Jacob," he said with a somewhat controlled growl and dark eyes, then turned to grab the bags again…and walked through the door, leaving it open.
Renesmee popped her head out when I'd reached the second step. "Oh good, you're still alive," she teased.
I chuckled courteously then thought, barely…
Edward placed our bags at the foot of the stairs and went to sit next to Bella, who smiled and waved, after I followed Renesmee in. My wife and I would share his/their old room until we all left in a couple days.
Tomorrow I would head to Billy's to pack up everything I wanted to take with me to New Hampshire, while the rest of the Cullens would gather their things and bring stuff from Bella and Edward's to the main house. We were going to be leaving soon. I was bitter-sweetly anxious.
Renesmee grabbed my hand and pulled me to the stairs. "Come on." She looked at the bags then motioned her head with a quick jerk upwards.
Emmett walked in from the kitchen, stopped and grinned. "Hey there, newlyweds. Did you two have fun?" No escaping the underlying meaning there.
"They had a great time," Alice answered from her decent down the stairs with Jasper. "I set it up." She winked when I glanced up at her. "I hope everything went smoothly with dinner and the ocean toys? Were you surprised?"
Were we ever, and thankful Alice wasn't able to hand out a play-by-play of us while we were gone.
"Very." Renesmee hugged her, then Jasper. "And we did have a great time," she said to Emmett, who grinned bigger. "Thank you all for everything."
The garage door slammed and Rosalie froze when she saw us. "Oh good, he's back…" she practically snarled, then smiled over Ren's shoulder at me when she too hugged her niece.
I looked behind me, just make sure that gesture truly was meant for me. Seeing that it was, I chuckled. It was so good to be home.
"Carlisle and Esme should be back soon," Rosalie said as she walked off, back to the garage I supposed. "He's taking care of a few last minute things at the hospital and Esme is finishing up a remodel. They'll be anxious to see you both, so be down here when they arrive."
She was as bad as her husband with assumptions. The only place to "come down from" was our room.
Ren grabbed my hand again, yanking as she took a step heading up. To our room no doubt…proving Rosalie right.
You got your frequency turned off, Edward? I decided to take a test run.
Edward, I said a little louder.
Edward! I shouted at the top of my mental lungs.
He turned to me with drawn eyebrows. "What?"
Just checking...I grinned.
Rolling his eyes, then nodding once, he gave me a final look that clearly said 'I heard you, now knock it off', and turned back to put his arm around Bella.
When we reached our room, Renesmee closed the door and jumped into my arms. "So, were you worried for nothing?"
With vampires? Never… "Yes," I admitted as I carried her over to the bed and plopped us sidewase on it, hearing the springs squeak a little, cringing at how I was sure everyone downstairs had probably heard it too, thinking… Oh who cared anymore. Brushing her hair back, stroking her cheek, I continued, "But your dad is going to tune us out. He promised."
She laughed. then rolled over on top of me, staring down, wiggling her eyebrows. "That's very good to know. Mom said he didn't get any sleep the first night we were gone." She giggled at Bella's joke and I smiled. Vampires didn't sleep. "Said he paced the floor of the cottage, wouldn't talk to anyone until he entered the house this morning, telling Emmett first thing if he said one word, we'd be short a vampire in the family."
Thank you Edward. Though Emmett's hidden innuendos spoke louder than actual words.
"He's good with Emmett and Jasper now?"
She nodded. "Mom said they worked everything out before we arrived, and after Alice announced she was glad to see them brothers again, though nothing had happened yet."
I laughed. "I bet she loves when we're gone."
Ren shook her head, growing serious, then placed her palm to my cheek, showing me many colorful images of our honeymoon, in full, memorable detail. "No more talk of our family or my father, Jake. I love you. And they care about you. That's all that matters anymore."
I growled, my blood boiling, and reached up to bring her down to me, her lips pressed to mine. "I love you, too," I whispered, before letting everything from the past go and making love to my wiser-than-ever wife.
In two short days we were going to be moving on to a new life in New Hampshire—going to college—at Dartmouth no less, and enjoying each other for as long as life lets us. Which according to Alice, is going to be a very, very long time.
For anyone who missed my profile page...I only have this story half completed from a few years ago. I've had other commitments and deadlines to tend to that forced me to have to set The Cullens down. I do apologize. I have the outline for the rest of the story, and maybe one day I'll get a chance to finish our favorite vampires' and wolf's adventures at Dartmouth. I could post it here, it's only a couple of pages. I'm not sure how that would go over though? But mostly, from the bottom of my heart, I want to send out a big THANK YOU to everyone who had fun with me.